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:: UPTU colleges told to be transgender-friendly ::

The Uttar Pradesh Technical University (UPTU) has issued a circular to all its affiliated colleges and institutes to develop transgender-friendly infrastructure and facilities on their campuses. Among other measures, the academic institutions have been asked to build separate restrooms to help transgender students adapt to the academic environment without any hassle or fear.

UPTU vice chancellor Dr R K Khandal said the university had received a letter from University Grants Commission suggesting a slew of measures regarding developing infrastructure for the transgender community on campus. "We have communicated the message to all affiliated institutions," Khandal said.

According to the UGC circular, colleges have been asked to introduce courses in the curriculum on the transgender community as a mandatory component of credits, to dispel myths shrouding their socio-cultural existence. Colleges have also been suggested to incorporate a separate gender column for transgenders in all application forms, academic testimonials and other relevant documents processed and issued by the University.

The step has been taken as per the Supreme Court judgment, which upheld transgenders' rights to self-identify their gender in April 2014.

Sunil Wag, principal of MGM College of Engineering and Technology, said, "We have not yet come across any student of transgender community in the college but will develop the infrastructure."

It has also been suggested that sensitization programmes and awareness workshops on the transgender community be organized for students, teachers, non-teaching staff and parents.

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